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Horse Behavior and Training

Buck, the real horse whisperer

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Ok, so I've just watched the last half hour or so of the above named program, out of interest. One thing he said caught me, after he'd worked with an orphan colt that was extremely dangerous and had attacked the person working with him, and what he said was that our horses are a mirror to our soul. Which is very true.
His method maybe different from Montys in various ways, but that just really caught me. What do you all think?? I assume that the members in the U.S. have heard a lot more about him than maybe the rest of us..

JoHewittVINTA
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Hi Tiggy. I've heard of this guy, some of it good & some less so. Many years ago someone said to me "The right way is the way that works with the horse you're working with". Today Moley is 17 months old - God, time flies! Yesterday Kirk walked out in traffic for the first time. He got upset when behind the older pony,Max, but calmed down when taking the lead - what a confident, competent 2 year old he's turned out to be. He embraces anything new so next year will be great fun. The other day I had Max's bridle, with a straight mouth plastic bit, with me. Kirk came to me to investigate & took the bit in his mouth. I slide the bridle over his ears for a short while, 20 seconds or so & then off again. He took the bit a second time & repeated the whole process. No fuss, no trauma, no fingers in mouth - all positive. Then his little sister came over to see what was happening. Moley is a cheeky girl. Yeah, you guessed it. She took the bit too, just like Kirk had, twice, bridle on & no fuss or trauma or fingers involved. I guess letting them use their mouths & suffering the odd, cheeky nip has paid off. I have gentle youngsters - Kirk holds my hand in his mouth. Cheers, Jo.

Tiggy, Tears
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I do agree, go with what works for the horse. The orphan colt in the program had been depraved of oxygen, so might have had some brain damage. The woman who owned him, has/had several Colts at the same time, and had a bit of a catalogue of errors her barn burned down, she broke her back,but had been attacked several times. What I liked about the guy was he said he held the horse no contempt and that if hed been handled more and possibly treated like a child with a disability, he could've been a nice hack, due to his possible brain damage. Which I suppose that could've been a huge contributing factor to his behaviour. Wasn't impressed with roping by a back foot, but it did work the horse stopped without anyone getting injured, but hmmm not sure!!

Tiggy, Tears
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Just had a thought, had a chat with a friend of mine a couple of weeks ago and she had a woman who does natural Horsemanship down to help with one of her horses. They work by getting the horses adrenaline up then bring them down then up again then down until they work out the safe place is let's say in the trailer/lorry. Can't remember the chap who she learned from but he's an Aussie guy in America, will see if I can find out his name.

LennyLlama
Hello!

Hi Tiggy,
I believe thats Warwick Schiller? Warwick schiller is a fantastic trainer and natural horseman, a lot of people over here in Australia follow his methods very closely, as do I.

Tiggy, Tears
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That'd be the one, thank you LennyLlama.

Tiggy, Tears
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Sorry Kindle was about to die!! Tell me more please. Had a quick look at Warwick Schiller's site, but was at work and it was a show day so we were quite busy, hence how I forgot his name.. Each horse is different so with all the various methods of N.H theres a method to suit all.

Here in the South West UK we've got a equine fair coming up in December which are advertising the SW Parelli group, might go watch them although I think my big man would see the waving of a rope at him as a challenge, and go on the defensive!!

Widgymaphlip
Please upload your photo 100 lessons completed

Hiya, I have to say I have not heard of this guy but I totally agree with the sentiment. Woods and I mirror each completely, which is great yet frustrating at times! lol
We are both sensitive, a bit moody at times lol and a bit anxious but we both man up for the other when needed and are patient with each other. I know that sounds weird but it works! We seem to 'get' each other, I suppose he is better at it than me. The only way we differ is that he is a very sociable monkey and I am a bit of a hermit! Love my boy :)
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I have to say I am very sceptical about other methods other than monty's as I have seen some cruel things with other 'natural horsemanship'. I am reading micheal peace's 'think like your horse' at the moment which is along monty's line which I like and a friend of mine has used. Will have a look at the others you all have mentioned though!

Tiggy, Tears
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Widgymaphilp, I don't think it hurts to look at other methods, maybe just to reiterate that you prefer Montys methods.
I'm not impressed by what I've seen of parelli as I've said my big horse really wouldn't appreciate it, especially when a stick is introduced, don't get me wrong he IS NOT afraid of a stick, I carry a schooling whip, but if he's going to do something/goes defensive you're on a loser if you have one..

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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I agree there is nothing wrong in looking and learning other methods as long as the methods do not involve any pain or undue distress to the horse.
When you look at Monty's methods you can see the horse working out what is happening and as they come to realize there is no reason for fear they start to comply and become willing partners.
Parelli work on the make up of the horse, different area of the brain thought patterns to try and work out which type of horse they are dealing with. Many of the Parelli methods I can't agree as pain is inflicted initially to gain results.
Clinton Anderson is another trainer who has amazing results with horses, the things he can get horses to do, but his initial stages with the horse involve a whip and welts on the horses body.
What I find disturbing with supposed natural horse trainers that use pain to control even if it's only in the initial stages, is that they feel they have to use pain to achieve, as if of the mind set 'no pain, no gain'. Yet in the horse world a horse only ever inflicts pain on another when it comes to protection of the herd. At all other times the horse will not inflict pain, it is a calm live in the now creature, so why use pain in so called natural horse training.
A nice lady you might like to watch is Missy Wren, very gentle in her ways and produces some amazing results with the horses she trains.

Widgymaphlip
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That is exactly why I am so reluctant to see other 'natural horsemanship' methods. There is no need for pain and I think that when you inflict pain on an animal they loose respect and trust for you and you are obviously not listening to them. I find it really distressing seeing anyone mistreating an animal and even thought the outcome may look good, I don't want to see it. I heard of a lady doing a demo of Parelli where she tired to send a horse away that was blind in one eye. As it needed to see her with her outside eye the horse turned her head and the lady got really angry at her. Absolutely disgusting.
I totally agree with Tiggy - you will never win a fight with a horse. Listening and understanding go much further. Even when I'm getting things wrong with woods, he will forgive me or even try meeting me half way as he knows I am trying. I can't imagine a relationship where an animal and I didn't work as a team.

Tiggy, Tears
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Saw something similar on fb, was not impressed..

Becky C
Hello!

That video was very distressing! I wanted to scream! MR and IH techniques I am so passionate about as they are so very very clear to the horse. I have never ever used MR methods on a horse and it's gone 'What the hell are you talking about??'

Part of the trick is Monty's instruction is simple, straight to the point. I like Buck's videos and can see what he's getting at but objectively it's not clear.. I can see a horse going round and then suddenly it's doing something bad- he gets its head round sharpish and I can't see what it's done for him to do this. Therefore if I can't see exactly what and when the horse stepped out of line and not crossed his feet over- how does the horse know?
I mean I get it- he gets results and he's non violent and therefore I do pay heed and watch and read bit on him absolutely but the pressure release/advance retreat/PICNIC stance that Monty takes works every time in every situation. All I know is I've backed and trained a fab, SAFE mare for myself and 10 or so other ponies that have gone on to small children using his methods and I get news on these ponies and how they're going on to compete and are so safe in traffic and most importantly how they love their owners. I'm no horse whisperer, no way! and I make mistakes ALL the time but essentially the horses have obviously understood their training.

LMSedgwick(Canada)
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I am a continual student and practitioner of horsemanship and While I have found Montys join up to be the best for me personally as the start for horses, I appreciate the exercises and methodology of the games to work with other methods to enhance the driving and intention sensitivity, I am not sure what Parelli you are subscribing to but there is no pain or harshness inflicted with the carrot stick by the professional... As with Jonathan Feilds horsemanship stick it is an extension of the arm to signal requests not as a whip.

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Many of the parelli methods are good and I use some of their methods depending on the horse. However, I have seen online videos from spectators where when their normal methods have not worked both pat and Linda have resorted to both the whip and ropes to tie the horse into submission forcing it to the ground. These old methods that Monty is completely against as that was the type of methods his father used. These videos can be seen on YouTube where disgruntled spectators have posted.
Clinton Anderson is also another horse whisperer who uses the whip to beat submission before he produces obedient horses.

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Note

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Doh, am on mobile and hit wrong button lol. If the teacher uses force or violence the student will too.

Tiggy, Tears
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But isn't that the point of Natural Horsmanship, NOT to beat them into submission!! Mine would see a rope being waved at him that is attached to his head will see that as an aggressive gesture. I've never tried to join up with him don't know why I just haven't..

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Yes Tiggy it it, but sadly people's interpretation and perception of what is natural horsemanship and what is violence varies enormously.
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People (including many Monty fans) struggle to get past the idea of these thins being "methods" and understand the philosophy and concept of non-violent work in the context of a shared relationship rather than a series of tasks that are "done" to the horse.
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If your bond is strong you don't need to do Join up, you already have it - and those of you that have been here a while are probably fed up of me banging on about it not being a "task" to complete but a way of communicating and bonding and if it's not needed don't do it. So it is your choice :-)
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However, we must also be very careful not to demonise other people's styles/methods, anything waved at a horse can be viewed as aggressive, but as we know, horses can be desensitised very quickly to things. It is the deliberate infliction of pain and fear that is not acceptable but learning can mean a little bit of psychological discomfort at first until the horse realises that there is nothing to fear.
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I'll stop now...I fear I'm rambling and lecturing ,,,:-)

Kicki -- Sweden
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But I love when you ramble, Vicci! I don't know many people who can ramble and make so much sense at the same time. ;) ;) ;)

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Ramble Vicci :)
I hear- well a horse uses violence to get another horse to do as it's told what's the difference.
.....

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Ramble Vicci :)
I hear- well a horse uses violence to get another horse to do as it's told what's the difference.
.....

Tiggy, Tears
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I've come to the conclusion my big man is completely nuts!! We put Winter and Beros into a different field yesterday, so she's out of sight not bothered by him screaming, although his mum is with him!! I went off with the lorry to move a friend's horse leaving my dearly beloved at the farm, he's going nuts, to the point his mother has buggered off down the field and the ducks have come in. I come back with the lorry and he goes quiet, don't know who he missed most, Winter, me or a trip in the lorry.. Bloody horse. Think he suffers separation anxiety big style!!! But that's a whole different post...

Mel - Ramsgate UK
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Bless ya, look forward to that post!! :D)

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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Kicki and Mel - you are very kind thank you :-) yes I hear that one too Mel, very annoying!

bahila73
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Hi Vicci, "RAMBLIN` ROSE, RAMBLIN` ROSE" A title of a song sung by Nat King Cole many years ago. All that I can say is keep on rambling girl. You are making a lot sense when you get on that roll. Love it. Bud

vicci - UK (North Wales)
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That's really kind of you Bud, thank you :-)

Debbie Roberts Loucks, USA
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Does anyone else think its sad that Robert Redford decided to have Buck's movie about an orphan horse who turns aggressive (and finally put down)? A movie about natural horsemanship could be so much more inspiring and beautiful. That was my take-away.
Miriam (Holland&Germany)
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Hi Debbie and all,
That was my feeling too!
Picking an orphan is not representative for Natural Horsemanship, because the orphan shows non-equine behavior. Bonding with the mare is nr.1 for a herd animal.
Monty never fails to say that orphans are very difficult to work with. Human intervention at this level with a foal can almost only lead to unpredictable behavior. The foals that I worked with, that had lost their dams at an early age, were always put in a small herd with some older mare for their education. Of course you need to do basics with them, like haltering, leading, picking up feet etc., but in the first place they need to be horse with horses.
JoHewittVINTA
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Hi. I'd like to point out something obvious to me - people who make blockbuster movies do so to make money. It may be loosely based on a true story but every aspect is manipulated to appeal to the greatest number of people, many of whom don't know a fetlock from a forelock. Robert Redford also made 'The Electric Horseman' - the story of a successful racing thoroughbred stallion, used by a corporation to promote their products & drugged in order to maintain their ability to handle it. Our hero steals the horse away & sets him free into the wild. The film ends there, not visiting the various grizzly possible outcomes of such actions. What I want to know is when is a movie going to made about the incredible life of one Monty Roberts? Yes, the project would require strict supervision to ensure credibility & accuracy but surely the subject matter would have 'worldwide appeal'. Cheers, Jo.











Debbie Roberts Loucks, USA
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Hi Jo, here Is a start to the interesting horses (and their stories) that have touched Monty over the years
https://www.racingpost.com/bloodstock/stranger-than-fiction-life-of-german-star-lomitas-to-be-made-into-a-movie/400547